Last week, Nepali cinema saw a new release in nearly a year. Even though a lot of producers and filmmakers were sceptical about it, Shiva Shrestha, who is the producer of Euta Esto Prem Kahani, released the movie with a hope it would do well. Shiva had a lot of hopes for the movie. First: his son Shakti was going to debut along with Karishma Manandhar’s daughter Kabita.
As the movie featured ‘star kids’ (children of starts from the movie industry), there was a hope that it would gain traction that would help it do well in the box office. The movie, however, flopped. The reviews it got were poor as it marked another failed debuts of star kids.
This is not the only time movies featuring star kids have failed. In 2019, Rato Tika Nidar Ma, starring Ashok Sharma’s son Ankit failed to please both the audience and the critics. Actor Biswa Basnet’s daughter Nirisha’s debut film Jani Najani also faced a similar fate.
In recent times, actors like Risita Basnet, Gaurav Pahari and Samyam Puri, whose debuts were better than the names mentioned above, are also not getting films. Apart from a few like Anmol KC, not many have had success at the box office, which may be a reason why producers and directors have refrained from casting them in movies.
Why is this the case? Here we list out seven interrelated reasons why star kids fail when in Nepali movie industry.
1. Poor choice in scripts
There is a saying in films; you are only as good as the script. When these actors choose movies, many disregard scripts. Some trust the judgment of their parents who have been a part of this industry. However, these judgments can often be wrong. Ask Shakti and Kabita, whose decision to play this movie might come back to haunt them in the future.
2. Below-par acting skills
Another reason why these starts flop is their poor acting skills. Many come to act because they think they can act. While others have been to acting schools and done theatre or acted in series, many star kids are fresh faces with zero experience. That can be seen in the movies. An example can be Ankit and Nirsuha both of whom’s acting was highly criticised.
Most become actors based on the reputations of their parents while many become actors because of their parents. However, the star kids, who have not struggled in the industry, do not have the zeal and determinations that their parents had when they started off. Many cannot even act. An example of that is Ashok Sharma’s son Ankit whose acting in Rato Tika Nidarma was miserable. Another example can be Kiran KC turning his son Sudan into a director. Many in the industry argue that Sudan has no directing skills.
4. Lack of awareness about life and its surroundings
Another reason why they cannot make it in the industry is they do not understand the struggle. They have to play all sorts of characters, many which they have never come across ever in their lives. Many fail to understand how the character was perceived. Nor do they understand the surrounding in which the character was developed. How can we expect an actor to play the role of a hungry beggar when s/he has not experienced poverty, hunger, neglect or discrimination?
5. Dependence on parents
This is a major problem that halts their progress. The star kids feel that everything will be taken care of by their parents. There is a sense of dependence which has a negative impact. Many depend on the parents than their ability to act, which after a point of time will disappear.
6. Comparison with parents
A reason why they fail is that many think these kids are equal to their parents. The kids argue that they are not looked at as an individual. For example, Kabita Manandhar is not rated as an actor but as Karishma Manandhar’s daughter. Even though she might be capable enough, she is compared to Karishma even after her very first film.
The same is the case with Haribansha Acharya and Madan Krishna Shrestha’s children who are good actors but are not given enough respect because they have not matched the fame amassed by their parents.
7. Lead roles, always
A reason a lot of these kids struggle is everyone debuts in a lead role without prior experience. Rather than taking a side role and work themselves up the ladder, almost all have debuted as leads, which adds extra pressure on them. This does not give them time to reflect on their actions. Salon Basnet and Gaurav Pahari, who have taken side roles, are a few actors who have been improving every time they are seen on the big screen.